Wednesday, October 20, 2010
3-point stance: Power shift in the SEC
By Ivan Maisel
1. The shift of power in the SEC from the East to the West this season is stunning in scope. Four SEC East teams already have three losses; South Carolina and Vanderbilt have two. In 18 seasons, the East champ has had as many as two losses only four times. But there is hope. The SEC West once had a winner with three conference losses -- LSU in 2001. The Tigers upset No. 2 Tennessee in the SEC Championship Game, 31-20.
2. Army coach Rich Ellerson has performed a miracle in only a season-and-a-half at West Point. It’s not merely that the Black Knights are 4-3, it’s how they’ve done it. In the three seasons before Ellerson took over, Army had a cumulative turnover margin of minus-42. Since he has arrived, Army is plus-16, and leads the nation this season at plus-11. While we’re at it, kudos to Oregon State, the only team in the nation yet to lose a fumble.
3. North Carolina State quarterback Russell Wilson threw 379 passes before an interception from 2008 into 2009. That’s an NCAA record, and it was, figuratively speaking, a long time ago. Since the streak broke against Wake Forest in the fifth game of last season, Wilson has thrown 20 picks, including nine in the Wolfpack’s past four games. Yes, he has thrown 37 touchdowns over the same 16 games. But his reputation for accuracy has outlived his performance.